June 9, 2008

3G iPhone, yada, yada.

Of course I was drooling over the liveblogs of WWDC today. I'm pleased to say that what was announced was almost precisely what I predicted a few days ago to a friend of mine, but I won't insist you believe me because it was in conversation and not date-able print. Not that it matters.

Three of my friends have asked me, the well-known Apple Early Adopter (*cough*SUCKER*cough*) if I'm going to get one, and when.

You know, I don't think I am.

I have an 8GB iPhone that I bought the day of release. I've been keeping it in my right pants pocket for a year, with no protection other than my trying to remember to not put my keys in that pocket. It (knock wood) works fine, and has no visible screen blemishes at all - and few on the case, either. I've gone through a pair of V-Moda headphones, but V-Moda replaced them cheerfully under warranty, so good on them.

What does the new phone (not the new firmware, the new phone) have that I might want? Let's see.

  • A-GPS
  • 3G cellular connection
  • ...um...a non-recessed headphone jack, woo
  • ...yeah, nothing else.

I really don't care about waiting 45 seconds versus 22 seconds to get my pages to load when on EDGE (rather than HSPDA or whatever '3G' is). I do care that the new phone's data plan appears to involve an *additional* $10/month (for what? That 20-second difference, meaningless when on Wi-Fi? Pshaw). I also care that I'd have to restart my two-year AT&T clock to get one.

Could Apple have sealed the deal with me? Yeah, they could have. In a simple way, and one that no doubt they'll do within months. The most limiting thing about the current iPhone I have? 8GB of storage. If they'd announced a 32GB version for $300, or even maybe $399, I'd have thought about it very very carefully. I have to manage what's on my phone sort of constantly to fit new podcasts and new video onto it. While I would probably fill a 32GB phone immediately, it would most likely all be with video content both transient and permanent, making the phone a much more usable movie player - which I enjoy about it a lot. Also app data space - although EBooks don't take up too much.

All the other stuff I really want - Exchange functionality, MobileMe, app store, SDK-and-resulting games - all of these will be available to me free via the 2.0 firmware update.

Also, suck on Apple if (as reports indicate may be the case) you'll no longer be able to buy the iPhone and then activate it at home. That was one of the little things that made me feel like I was finally achieving some independence from the cell phone scumpond that is the industry (I know, locking it to AT&T more than made up for this slight bright light). It's possible that they're only promising it in stores because the initial production run all went to retail; it's possible that they just aren't sure enough about ship dates etc. to promise its availability via the Apple Store online. But still.

So no. I think I'll be holding on to my 2.5G version. Here's hoping it doesn't break anytime soon. Hm, maybe I should buy Applecare for it, if they'll let me...

Posted by jbz at June 9, 2008 7:16 PM | TrackBack

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